Bragg, Kananaskis riding- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Bragg, Kananaskis riding

    I'm going to be in the Calgary area for a few days next week and I'm looking for some of the easier rides in the area. I'll be with the GF and she's really new to the sport so I'm looking for stuff that won't scare the hell out of her or kick her ass too bad. She's an ok climber but the endurance isn't quite there and she's still a bit hesitant on the technical stuff. I'm probably going to hit the telephone trail, possibly the terrace trail in Kcountry, and we might even head into the city to ride nose hill or fish creek. Saving Minnewanka and Ross lake for when the tourists leave so thats out of the question. Any other ideas from the Calgary folk? hopefully something nice and flowey without a ton of fireroad? Thanks in advance.

    Al

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by lane
    I'm going to be in the Calgary area for a few days next week and I'm looking for some of the easier rides in the area. I'll be with the GF and she's really new to the sport so I'm looking for stuff that won't scare the hell out of her or kick her ass too bad. She's an ok climber but the endurance isn't quite there and she's still a bit hesitant on the technical stuff. I'm probably going to hit the telephone trail, possibly the terrace trail in Kcountry, and we might even head into the city to ride nose hill or fish creek. Saving Minnewanka and Ross lake for when the tourists leave so thats out of the question. Any other ideas from the Calgary folk? hopefully something nice and flowey without a ton of fireroad? Thanks in advance.

    Al
    I don't know its current condition, but Telephone loop can be *very* muddy even when everything else is dry (otherwise it's a good ride for a newb).

    I think Minnewanka would be a "must do", like you said if you can go on a day it's not too busy, but keep in mind, most tourists don't hike too far, so I've found it gets fairly quiet maybe 5k in anyway.

    Barrier/priarie view/jewell pass is always a good choice. It has a steepish/longish climb, but awesome views at the top, with really nice singletrack downhill (some is a bit technical, so she can slow or walk as required). Even on a Sunday, most hikers are on the climb, which is wide enough for easy passing, then Prairie view and jewell you don't see many at all (maybe pass or get passed by other bikers).

    Moose Packers is a really nice and flowy downhill, but requires a long gravel road climb. Sulphur springs also starts at Station Flats, but crosses the (Moose Mountain) road, up some more, then back across the road to connect with itself (a bit of steep climbing on the way back), and isn't a bad loop either.

  3. #3
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    Miniwanka has been closed alot due to bears, so check with the rangers before you head out there.

    I'd agree with Telephone Pole, it can be very muddy.

    You should check out Quark Creek/Wildhorse. Its out by Elbow falls, you can ride do it as a loop riding up a fire road and down wildhorse. Or as and out and back on wildhorse. Then you can add on going over to Volcano ridge. This section is realtively flat across some pastures.

    Another one is Jumping Pound Loop. You take the Sibald Flats turnoff. When you come across the first cattle guard you'll see a trail. It loops down near the river on one side and cross the road up on the other. It loops around the rangers station out there.

    Another good small loop is Fullerton. You start at Allen bill pond and head under the bridge. Its similar to Sulphur Springs but much shorter.

    If you want a longer ride there is Little/Big Elbow.

    Enjoy!

  4. #4
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    Hi,

    if your wife is not too comfortable on technical stuff, I would stay away from Moose Packers or Sulphur Spring as both have fairly technical downhill sections. If you want to do one of the 2, Moose Packers is a lot more fun, but a much bigger climb as well.

    IronCreek-TomSnow would be a good one to do as well as it is not really technical, there is no huge climb and the downhill on Tom Snow will leave a nice grin on her face as it is fast and flowy with just enough difficulty to make it interesting.

    I would stay away from Telephone Loop as we got some significant downpours over the last few days and chances are it will be very very wet, i.e. not fun.

    Terrace trail is an awesome scenic easy ride.

    NoseHill Park and Fish Creek Park are always good choices as well.

    I hope this helps.
    A climb is really just a flat piece of road that points up. A headwind is a climb that you can't see. So it's all flat road, really.

  5. #5
    conjoinicorned
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    it's clear that everyone has a different definition of technical!!

    the jumpingpound loop (as described by ascentcanada) is a great semi tech, relatively short loop, tons of fun in both directions. i agree with fsrxc that minnewanka is usually quiet on a weekday and all people disappear around 5km in, great trail.

    i don't find packers or sulphur springs are even remotely technical, so i'm not sure how your wife will find them. packers is a great flowy trail. the fireroad climb is an agonizing 6km of eating dust from the shuttling DH riders. sulphur springs mostly avoids the fireroad but a little less awesome on the way down.

    the prarieview/jewell loop is one of the best in the area, but certainly has technical sections and gets semi-steep in areas. also the canmore nordic centre has a whole mess of trails from easy to hard, you could waste a day there without seeing the same dirt.
    what would rainbow unicorn do?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ferday
    i don't find packers or sulphur springs are even remotely technical
    I thought the same thing until I took my GF out there last year. Now she likes it but I got an earful of why would you take me on something like that. She had gotten comfortable with Fullerton, Tom Snow, Miniwanka... There are not too many flat sections on Sulphur, your either climbing or bombing down.

    Another fun ride for beginners is Eagle Ridge, Just don't try to take the trail in the parking lot. Double back on the road and get onto the trail back there. Some twisty singletrack with a climb to a viewpoint. Then bomb all the way back.

  7. #7
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    There are a couple of loose rocky sections, up and down, with some roots on Sulphur Springs. No, not super technical, but the average rider would be challenged.

    There are a couple of technical areas on Moose Packers as well. A couple of the switch backs are fairly washed out and you can go "ass over tea kettle" pretty easily if you come in too hot.

    My Ex was not impressed after I took her on Moose Packers and Jumping Pound for the first time, after riding Tom Snow, Telephone Trail, and the Elbow Loop.

  8. #8
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    Thanks, guess I need to do a bit more research. Too bad I can't swing time off just to come up and ride it all. I was going thru some older threads and came across a post mentioning Jumping Pound Loop, apparently its a shorter version of the ridge ride. Anybody know anything about this?

  9. #9
    conjoinicorned
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    ascentcanada gave directions to the jumpingpound loop, excellent fun trail nice and short with minimal climbing/descending. one of my fast favorites.
    what would rainbow unicorn do?

  10. #10
    rjp
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    Minnewanka is closed until October (they have gone to a permanent closure from early August to October rather than dealing with things on a bear by bear basis). I have found that, once people have been biking for a while, they lose perspective as to what “technical” means to a new rider. A number of the trails mentioned here would be somewhat difficult for a new rider but not overly technical for someone who has been riding for awhile. As a number of other posters have mentioned, the Telephone loop would probably be a mess with the rain we have gotten lately. My [somewhat repetitive] suggestions would be:

    • Iron Creek / Tom Snow
    • Quirk Creek / Wildhorse - you may want to walk a couple of small sections on the Wildhorse
    • Elbow Loop – a long physical ride but not technical; a little short on single track if that’s what you are looking for

  11. #11
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    Probably going to end up taking her on the Quirk Creek ride seeing as thats the one everybody keeps mentioning. Is it the lakeside trail thats closed on Minnewanka, or is it just Almer Pass? I had a look on the Parks website and no closure was listed for the lake trail.

  12. #12
    rjp
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    I took a look and it seems that the lakeshore trail is open; I had thought it was the portion that was closed (always lots of buffalo berries along that route). I guess that's another option for you - although I'm not sure I would consider that a beginner's trail.

    http://www.pc.gc.ca/apps/scond/Cond_...3&oPark=100092

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by lane
    Thanks, guess I need to do a bit more research. Too bad I can't swing time off just to come up and ride it all. I was going thru some older threads and came across a post mentioning Jumping Pound Loop, apparently its a shorter version of the ridge ride. Anybody know anything about this?
    Basically there are 2 jumpingpound trails that people refer to - one is a real grind to the top of a mountain, across the ridge, down to the road - then take the road back to the car. you DONOT want to take your wife on this - she will hate you.

    The other jumpingpound loop was mentioned earlier in the thread - take the sibbald exit off of highway 1 until you get to a cattleguard at sibbald campground. You'll see a trail climbing off to your right. this is the beginner trail that can be done in either direction - it crosses the road and is about 11km? Most of the riders I ride with call this Sibbald - but the map has it named jumpingpound.

    I took my wife on her first ride on this trail. She cried. Now she doesn't ever want to do it because it is too easy and "a waste of time".
    ahhh, the cry rides...

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